Ecco Press

Ecco is a New York-based publishing imprint of HarperCollins. Ecco was founded in 1971 by Daniel Halpern as an independent publishing company. In 1999 it was acquired by HarperCollins, with Halpern remaining at the head. Since 2000, Ecco has published the yearly anthology The Best American Science Writing, edited by Jesse Cohen.[1] In 2011, Ecco created two separate publishing lines each "curated" by chef-author Anthony Bourdain and novelist Dennis Lehane.

Ecco Press
Parent companyHarperCollins
FounderDaniel Halpern
Country of originUnited States
Headquarters locationManhattan, New York City
Key peopleMegan Lynch, Denise Oswald
Publication typesBooks
Fiction genresLiterary Fiction, poetry


Halpern founded Ecco in 1971, originally to publish the literary magazine Antaeus[2] (which folded in 1994). Ecco's name was suggested by Halpern's initial backer, ketchup heiress Drue Heinz.[2] Initially, Ecco specialized in reissues and paperback editions of hardcovers previously published by other companies,[2] including works by Paul Bowles, Cormac McCarthy,[2] Charles Bukowski, and John Fante.

Notable titles published by Ecco since its sale to 1999 sale to HarperCollins include the paperback edition of Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly and Patti Smith's memoir, Just Kids.[2] Currently, Ecco releases between 35 and 40 titles a year, usually a mixture of literary novels, celebrity memoirs, and culinary titles; by authors such as Joyce Carol Oates, Richard Ford, David Wroblewski, Mario Batali, Daniel Boulud, and April Bloomfield.[2]

In September 2011, Ecco announced that Anthony Bourdain would have his own publishing line, which would include acquiring three to five titles per year that "reflect his remarkably eclectic tastes."[3] In describing the line, Bourdain said, "This will be a line of books for people with strong voices who are good at something — who speak with authority. Discern nothing from this initial list — other than a general affection for people who cook food and like food. The ability to kick people in the head is just as compelling to us — as long as that's coupled with an ability to vividly describe the experience. We are just as intent on crossing genres as we are enthusiastic about our first three authors. It only gets weirder from here."[4]

In October 2011, Ecco announced that Dennis Lehane would have his own eponymous publishing line, acquiring ". . . literary fiction with a dark urban edge.”[5] One of the initial books in the line was Ivy Pochoda's Visitation Street.

Notes and references

  1. Kettmann, Steve. "The Best and the Weirdest," Wired (July 31, 2003).
  2. Deahl, Rachel. "Milestones: Halpern Reflects on 40 Years of Ecco," Publishers Weekly (Nov. 25, 2011).
  3. "Anthony Bourdain Adds 'Book Publisher' To Resume". Huffington Post. September 12, 2011. Retrieved February 25, 2012.
  4. Forbes, Paula. "The Lineup For Anthony Bourdain's Ecco Imprint: Roy Choi, Texas Barbecue, Kickboxing". Eater. Retrieved February 25, 2012.
  5. Witt, Emily. "Dennis Lehane to ‘Curate’ Eponymous Line of Books for HarperCollins," New York Observer (Oct. 11, 2011).
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